The CMS enacted a new Medicare requirement that physicians meet face-to-face with home-health and hospice patients, a move that was strongly opposed by providers. Under a provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, home-health patients must be seen by a physician within 90 days before care begins or within 30 days after it starts, according to a CMS statement.
Late News: CMS enacts face-to-face rule for hospice, home health
Hospice patients must be seen in the 30 days before the start of the patient's third benefit period. “This poses a burden that is impossible to comply with,” said Val Halamandaris president of National Association for Home Care & Hospice, Washington. “What we see is a train wreck” coming as a result of the unnecessary requirements of the rule, he said, because getting physicians to visit homebound patients or getting the patient to see the physician is often unrealistic. The NAHC and several other major provider associations fought to have implementation of the rule delayed until July 1, in a letter to the HHS agency. Implementation was delayed once before from Jan. 1.
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